Eulie Lee – Escape (ENG review)

Street date 05/24/2024
Eulie Lee – Escape (ENG review)

Here is a well-crafted album that, however, will hold no surprises for fans of this genre of jazz. Indeed, a somewhat pretentious form of composition, at the expense of the sensitivity necessary for this type of writing, occasionally borrowing Latin rhythms even detracts from the overall experience. One cannot make an album solely reliant on energy to try to make it come alive. Nevertheless, Ellie Lee is an excellent performer and that is certainly what she should stick to. Composition is a delicate art; it is not about merely stringing together notes and rhythms for it to work.
We find ourselves with complex compositions here, with dry rhythms; it sorely lacks groove and life. The album is listenable, yet one wonders why the title “Escape” is chosen for an album that hardly inspires any dreams. In Europe, we are accustomed to such albums by excellent musicians that, nonetheless, do not inspire us. These are what we call “business card” albums, which allow musicians of a good standard to try to find concerts and festivals, but art is something else—it’s an emotion, and here, there is hardly any emotion.
Having had the chance to see the composer and pianist Joachin Khun many times, an artist completely opposite to Ellie Lee, who is never too verbose and always precise in the calibration of notes, I can be captivated by complexity when it is justified, not when chatter is unnecessary. Especially this year, we have a wide selection of albums by pianists, and not the least… Of course, every artist has their audience, and that is why I am discussing this album. If you enjoy music without soul, borrowing from everything you already know in terms of intentions, themes, etc., then this album is for you. Others will certainly find their pleasure in Michael Arbenz’s excellent album, which we recently reviewed here.

Thierry De Clemensat
USA correspondent – Paris-Move and ABS magazine
Editor in chief Bayou Blue Radio, Bayou Blue News

PARIS-MOVE, March 10th 2024


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